BRINGING AN END TO OUR SHORT SERIES ON EXPERTISE
n. — allusively, a person who exercises a controlling or mesmeric influence on another, freq. for sinister purpose
fm. a character in George du Marnier’s 1894 novel Trilby, in which the Jewish musician and hypnotist Svengali enchants and exploits ill-fated half-Irish heroine Trilby O’Ferrall. Influential in its time, the novel popularized the Romantic conception of Bohemian Paris, inspired The Phantom of the Opera (1910), and in later years was roundly criticized as anti-semitic. Svengali, as a word, remains.
first published. 1914